I spent most of 2006 with All Hands, first on the Gulf Coast and then in Indonesia. It was an amazing experience. They are incredibly good at helping unskilled volunteers from all backgrounds find ways to be truly useful in natural-disaster affected communities. Their small size also makes them extremely flexible and responsive to the needs of the communities. They had a big impact on the places I worked with them, and also a huge impact on me as a volunteer.
I joined All Hands Tohoku project in Japan 2011. It was a great experience to join them to contribute on helping people from tsunami. It might have been a small changes comparing to all the damages they got in entire area , but through the volunteering I could see what had happened and the situation of the hazard area and how people live now in that area through each projects. All hands is well organized group, several projects had been taken place at the same time led by real responsible leaders, so even new members and a large numbers of the people always knew what they had to do.I am so glad to meet all the volunteers who came from all over the world to help Japan.
I have volunteered with All Hands in Haiti, Japan, and most recently in Catskills, NY. What I love about All Hands is that they take real good care of their volunteers and the community that they are serving. And all they ask from you is your time and your willingness to help. When disaster strikes, All Hands almost instantly springs into action to provide whatever assistance is needed in the disaster stricken areas. What I also love about All Hands is that their program transforms followers into leaders. Volunteering with All Hands has been one of the most meaningful experiences I've ever had. More power to All Hands volunteers!
I experienced the Tohoku earthquake in Tokyo, and having lived in Japan 20 years, wanted to head north as soon as possible to help. All Hands was the first group to accept my application I feel very fortunate that it was them. We worked long and hard. We held frequent discussions on how to be respectful to local sensitivities while throwing full energy into the tasks to hand. The mix of local and international volunteers really helped keep things on track and that mix of enthusiasm and respect helped win over the community we were based in. Personally, over the 6 months I was volunteering, I made friendships that will last a lifetime. I hope to have the opportunity to participate in other projects in the future, to try to help payback all the support that we received in japan.
I volunteered with All Hands in Haiti and found a second home with the organization over the course of a life changing experience. I had no idea what to expect when I decided to leave and it was my first true volunteer experience. I have to say, I could not imagine it being with any other organization besides All Hands. As soon as I am finished with my current obligations, my highest hopes are solely to work with/and or volunteer with All Hands. The organization is truly providing sustainable solutions to those in need in an effective and efficient way. The relationships the organization has with the locals and the community says everything without words. The relationships I developed with the internationals and locals are ones I cherish and value above all. The work ethic is absolutely incredible within the project and each day is utilized to its full potential. The support the organization provides for volunteers is excellent and necessary, especially to keep everyone healthy under such conditions. The skill set I walked away from the project with is broad, not only in physical labor areas, but also in intellectual and social areas. All Hands has made itself a very special place in my heart and I believe in their mission wholeheartedly. I would recommend them to any and all who are willing to work hard and want to see a difference.
I am a 65 year old retire man. I spent 2 months this summer as an All Hands Volunteer in Leogane Haiti. I have years of experience in sales and Sales Management. I was impressed at the reqirements and skill sets that were a part of All Hands managment. The standards required of the volunteers and the work ethic of all involved. I made many many good friends with international volunteers as well as the locals. The goals and accomplishments of each of the projects were directed at improving the lives and living conditions of those who were still suffering from the devastating affects of the earthquake. The two months I spent involved with this organization will be with me forever and have changed my life for the better.
An incredible organisation run by honest and hard working people. Their attention to detail is phenomenal and their attitude to the communites they work in is sincere and well planned, especially when it comes to the long term sustainability of their work. I worked with them in Haiti and have spent every moment since looking forward to when I can help with them again.
I volunteered with All Hands in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines following the devastating effects of Typhoon Washi in February 2012. During my time there, we helped homeowners to remove debris and mud from within their homes so that they could move back in from tent shelters or evacuation centres. We also cooperated with Catholic Relief Services, IOM and Habitat For Humanity Philippines to build homes for local residents. This was by far one of the best volunteering experiences I have had.
I've volunteered 3 times for All Hands. Twice in Haiti , once on Japan. Love the way they find just the right community to work with. They assess needs with local community and jobs are based on what comes from the assessments. Usually cleanup and gutting of affected homes. But much else accomplished such as building schools and bio-sand water filters in Haiti, educating folks about cholera and earthquake preparedness in Haiti, teaching work skills and resume writing in Haiti, cleaning up and reconstructing a park in Japan, planting rice fields in Japan, etc. At the same time working with local volunteers and learning their culture. The bonds/friendships made can be incredible...with All Hand volunteers, local volunteers and the community you are serving. You pay to get yourself to disaster area they feed and house you. Definitely no frills and communal environment. Not much alone time so beware. Average age is about late 20's. Management is of same age and tends to be a bit inexperienced...with a learn as you go and promote from within mentality. Has it's ups and downs. Pretty transparent and very flexible about most things but don't get me wrong....they expect you to work!
Great organization. I Went to Haiti to work with them for 2 months and ended up staying for over a year. It is a great organization to gain experience while improving peoples lives.